Paleo & AIP Cherry Hand Pies that will make your Valentine’s Day Special

Autoimmune Protocol friendly Cherry Vanilla Hand Pies perfect for sharing with your loved ones this Valentine's Day | #AIP #glutenfree #paleo

I’m having a really difficult writing this post right now because I have a giant snuggle bug on my lap (AKA my golden retriever, Kiro) nudging my hands, trying to get me to pet him. He does this pretty much constantly because he’s a bit needy. In a cute way though. My couch is clearly not a very productive work environment, but it’s hard to be upset when you’re getting puppy snuggles.

Enough about my furry children. You’re here for the food; AIP Cherry Vanilla Hand Pies to be specific. Right?!? I really wish I had one right now. Unfortunately, my husband and I killed these bad boys in less than two days… ya they’re that good. I spent most of this past Sunday morning tinkering with this recipe to get it just right for you, and then spent the rest of the morning sharing in the deliciousness of my hard work with my husband. Recipe development is hard but tasty work!

I had to make two batches of the cherry filling because I accidentally imparted a slight smoky flavor to the first batch (meaning I burnt it)…. I put the filling mixture on the stove to cook, probably on a bit too high of a temperature, and then started cleaning up a bit. This involved me leaving the kitchen and heading into the office where I then decided I needed to find some paperwork right that second. Of course I couldn’t find it right away, and by the time I did I started to smell a bit of a burning smell coming from the kitchen. So I ran to the stove and the filling is full on boiling and has completely burnt to the bottom of the pot. Clearly I don’t multitask well.

Autoimmune Protocol friendly Cherry Vanilla Hand Pies perfect for sharing with your loved ones this Valentine's Day | #AIP #glutenfree #paleo

I was able to salvage what wasn’t stuck to the pan, but I didn’t want to use that in the hand pies because I wanted them to taste like the perfect combination of cherries and vanilla, not the perfect combination of cherries, vanilla, and smoke. So I cleaned the pot, which took about 10 straight minutes of all out scrubbing, and made a new batch. And obviously I watched this one a little closer than the last one. No more multitasking while I cook! Well that’s probably a lie, but I’m going to at least try to avoid it. If you can’t tell, I don’t like being idle.

So with my new and improved batch of cherry pie filling and my highly raved about AIP pie crust, I managed to create these scrumptious heart shaped hand pies. You know, because Valentine’s Day. Even though I’m not super into the holiday doesn’t mean I can’t make heart shaped things. Hearts are pretty. Obviously you don’t have to make these into hearts. You could use a circle cookie cutter or the ring of a mason jar lid to make circles. Or double the filling recipe and make a full on pie with a double crust. Whatever floats your boat. It’s going to taste wonderful regardless.

Autoimmune Protocol friendly Cherry Vanilla Hand Pies perfect for sharing with your loved ones this Valentine's Day | #AIP #glutenfree #paleo

4.8 from 5 reviews
Cherry Vanilla Hand Pies
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
Makes about 5 hand pies {paleo, AIP, gluten free, dairy free, egg free, nut free}
Serves: 6-8
  1. Preheat oven to 350
  2. Over medium heat, combine cherries, lemon juice and maple syrup
  3. Once the mixture starts to simmer, whisk in arrowroot starch until thoroughly combined
  4. Bring to a boil, reduce heat to low and simmer, stirring frequently, for about 10 minutes until thickened
  5. Remove from heat and add vanilla
  6. Set aside to cool while you prepare the crust
  7. Combine flour, salt and gelatin in a mixing bowl
  8. Cut shortening into flour mixture with a pastry cutter or two knives until it is the size of peas
  9. Add applesauce, water and vinegar and mix with a spoon until combined
  10. Roll out dough between two pieces of parchment into a ⅛" sheet
  11. Using a cookie cutter or the rim of a mason jar lid, cut shapes in the dough and remove excess
  12. Carefully move dough onto parchment lined baking sheet with a spatula
  13. Repeat to create the tops of the pies
  14. Spoon 1 heaping tablespoon of filling onto each bottom layer of crust
  15. Gently place the top layer of crust over the filling and press the edges together with your fingers
  16. Cut 3 slits in the top layer of crust with a paring knife
  17. Bake for 18- 20 minutes (note: this will not brown as much as traditional pie crust)

Do you celebrate Valentine’s Day? If so, what’s your favorite V-Day treat? And no, it doesn’t have to be chocolate, although we do love chocolate around here.

In vibrant health,


16 thoughts on “Paleo & AIP Cherry Hand Pies that will make your Valentine’s Day Special

  1. Drianna

    Hearts are great! You don’t need them only for Valentines Day!
    So for the hearts you just used a heart cookie cutter and then pie-d them together?


  2. Joanna

    I just made these for “Pi Day” and they were so delicious! I subbed frozen mixed berries for the cherries and they still tasted amazing. Thanks for a great AIP recipe! 🙂

  3. Qu Boudica

    Going to make these into bars for kiddo to take to summer camp, almost like long fig newtons…. OH! Fig filling!!!

  4. Bettrietta Kime

    Delicious! I accidentally put twice as much thickener in the cherry filing- but it was still yummy. The crust is not sweetened, which is okay since the filling is sweet, but my kids weren’t as fond of it like that. Definitely making it again (maybe with a little coconut sugar mixed in).

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